Severe weather rundown: Record-breaking tornado statistics for May 2021

Weather Blog
Lowering wall cloud in San Saba County as severe storms push through the area on March 24, 2021 (Gabe Cox/Tornado Trackers)

Lowering wall cloud in San Saba County as severe storms push through the area on March 24, 2021 (Gabe Cox/Tornado Trackers)

(KXAN) — The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) just released their preliminary May 2021 severe weather report, revealing some interesting statistics.

The most remarkable one?

If the preliminary report stands, for the first time in recorded history, there were no tornadoes rated EF-3+ in May in the United States.

Another incredible tornado record recently broken, as explained in a previous KXAN weather blog, is that there has not been an EF-5 tornado – the strongest tornadoes on the EF scale – since May 20, 2013. It’s currently the longest EF-5 drought on record.

The SPC’s report also included other noteworthy tornado-related data. May saw the 8th fewest tornado watches since 1970. Additionally, only eight EF-2+ tornadoes have been confirmed for the month of May so far. While May is over, the SPC is still combing through their data and storm reports, so a finalized report will later replace this preliminary one.

If no additional significant tornadoes (tornadoes rated EF-2 or higher on the Enhanced Fujita scale) are added to the finalized report, May 2021 will have had the 5th fewest number of significant tornadoes for the month of May in recorded history (1950-present).

While May severe weather reports were overall below normal, tornado reports were near the 10-year average.

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